Pirates rack up over 500 yards in total offense in 55-31 win over Osage

Chris Bowie
Boonville Daily News
Boonville sophomore quarterback Colby Caton scores the first of his two touchdowns on the ground Friday night in Tri-County Conference action against Osage. Caton finished the game with 14 carries for 45 yards and two touchdowns and also completed 9 of 15 passes for 216 yards and three scores in a 55-31 win over Osage.

Boonville Pirates football coach Greg Hough knew he had to do something different to get the offense going again.

So on Tuesday during practice, Hough said the coaching staff decided to go to hand signals to make things simpler for the players on offense.

As it turned out, the Pirates must have been listening while finishing with 516 yards of total offense for a 55-31 win over Osage.

The win also snapped a three-game skid by Boonville, which Hough said lasted right at 21 days. The Pirates improved to 3-3 on the season and 1-3 in the Tri-County Conference.

“I’m not going to lie, we needed this win,” Hough said. “It didn’t matter who it was, just win at this point. I didn’t care if it was conference or non-conference, we just needed a win. Right now we have some good going our way so hopefully we continue to build on this good. Great win tonight. I’m proud of our kids.”

Boonville sophomore quarterback Colby Caton also needed a game like this after struggling the last-three weeks against Blair Oaks, Southern Boone and California. Caton was definitely on top of his game tonight while completing 9 of 15 passes for 216 yards and three touchdowns and rushing 14 times for 45 yards and two scores.

Caton said it definitely felt good because the offense has been struggling a lot lately. “We knew that they were going to put up a lot of points so we had to put up a lot of points and we did that,” Caton said. “It feels good putting up some points after three games of not really scoring at all. It was also hard on me the last three weeks because I felt I had been letting the team down, so tonight I was just trying to play hard.”

The Pirates also got a wake-up call early in the ballgame when Osage took its opening drive and marched it right down the field for a touchdown to go up 7-0. The seven-play drive, which started from the Indians own 20, took a total of three minutes.

Of course the Pirates did one better on their first drive of the game. Starting from their own 29, Boonville drove the ball 71 yards on just four plays for the score when junior DJ Wesolak scored from 8 yards out with 7:55 left to tie the game at 7-all.

Boonville never looked back after that while adding two more scores before the quarter ended when Caton scored the first of his two rushing touchdowns from 7 yards out with 5:13 left to extend the lead to 14-7. Then, after taking over at the Indians 35 after a short punt, the Pirates hit paydirt again on just four plays on a 10 yard run again by Caton to make it 21-7.

If that wasn’t enough, Boonville forced yet another punt by Osage on its next possession and then marched the ball 95 yards on just three plays for the score when Caton hit junior receiver Jamesian McKee in stride on a 90 yard pass with 8:46 left in the half to go up 28-7.

The Indians came right back with a score on their next possession by moving the ball 83 yards on 11 plays when quarterback Brockton McLaughlin hit paydirt on a 15 yard scramble to cut the lead to 28-13.

Meanwhile, on the kick off, Osage recovered the onside kick at the Boonville 49 and then scored again on a 1 yard run by McLaughlin to make it 28-19 with 2:14 left in the half.

With a 11 point lead at intermission, Hough said he knew the Pirates would be able to score on Osage but wasn’t counting on giving the Indians 14 points off special teams mistakes.

“We just had to get the ball in our playmakers hands,”Hough said. “The first-five weeks of the season we probably tried to establish too much of the run game and some things we were trying to do was too complexed.”

Whatever Hough and the coaching staff did to make it easier, it worked. While scoring four touchdowns in the first half, the Pirates came out and scored their fifth to start the third quarter when Caton hooked up with junior DJ Wesolak on a 35 yard scoring strike with 10:59 left to push the lead to 34-19. Of course right before the touchdown pass, Wesolak had dropped a pass across the middle for a potential touchdown.

Wesolak said he felt horrible after dropping the pass. “Iknew I just had to get back in the end zone after that one,” Wesolak said. “We knew Osage was going to put up a lot of points so we just had to come out and compete and get our offense rolling. The defense stepped up and got some big stops and the offense just wanted to keep it rolling and get the ball in the end zone.”

Of course the Pirates weren’t out of the woods just yet. Although Boonville led Osage by 15, the Indians came right back with a nine-play, 75 yard drive for the score on a 2 yard run by running back Jesse Wermuth to cut the lead to nine at 34-25 with 8:05 left.

It also looked like the Indians were going to cut the lead again after recovering a fumble at the Boonville 34. However, after driving the ball down to the 6, senior Peyton Taylor came up with his first career interception by running it back all the way to the Osage 41. Five plays later, senior running back Andrew Wiser scored on a 1 yard run up the middle to extend the lead back to 16 at 41-25.

The Indians came right back on a nine-play, 80 yard drive for the score when McLaughlin hooked up with receiver Graber Hunter on a 30 yard pass to bring the score to 41-31.

However it was all Boonville after that with Wiser scoring his second touchdown on a 16 yard run with 8:08 left in the game to go up 48-31.

Wiser also got it done on defense by picking off a McLaughlin pass on the Indians next drive at midfield. Eight plays later after moving the ball down to the 16, Caton hit junior DaWan Lomax across the middle for a touchdown to extend the lead to 55-31 with 3:33 left.

Boonville finished the game with 14 first downs along with 300 yards rushing and another 216 passing for a total of 516. Osage, meanwhile, had 21 first downs along with 294 yards rushing and 219 passing for a total of 513.

Wiser led all rushers with 11 carries for 87 yards and two touchdowns while Lomax had three carries for 82 yards, Wesolak four for 64 yards and Caton 14 for 45 yards.

McKee also had a huge night for the Pirates with two catches for 122 yards and one touchdown. Charlie Bronakowski finished the game with four catches for 38 yards while Wesolak had one catch for 35 yards and one touchdown and Lomax two catches for 21 yards and one score.

On defense for the Pirates, Wesolak had 11 total tackles and one tackle for a loss. Harper Stock finished the game with 10 total tackles while Lane West added nine tackles, three tackles for losses and two sacks, Evan Gonzalez with nine tackles and one tackle for loss, Peyton Hahn with nine tackles, three tackles for loss and one sack, Max Eckerle with eight tackles and one tackle for loss, DaWan Lomax and Hunter Pethan each with five tackles, Peyton Taylor with four tackles, Jamesian McKee with three tackles and one tackle for loss, Xavier Flippin, Andrew Wiser and Saylor Marquez each with two tackles and Dakota Troost, Spencer Steakley, Ethan Watson, Cole Mackey, Nash Mckenzie and Trent Maxwell each with one tackle.

Steakley and Mckenzie also had one tackle for loss each. Mckenzie also recorded one sack while McKee had one caused fumble and Taylor and Wiser each with one interception.

For Osage, sophomore running back Eric Hood finished the game with 30 carries for 213 yards and one touchdown while McLaughlin completed 15 of 23 passes for 206 yards and one touchdown. Graber Hunter had five catches for 94 yards and one touchdown.